TB Exclusive Q&A with Valentino Khan!

Tropicalbass goes straight to the source as the moombahton forever is getting stronger. So we talk to one of the guys who is driving the moombah force: Valentino Khan!

TB: So lets begin with RUKUS!! it has received support from Diplo, Steve Aoki, Dillon Francis, Flux Pavillion, among many more, Do you think that song made you “an instant moombahton household name”?

Valentino Khan:Well that track was definitely a breakthrough for me within the genre and probably within the EDM scene as a whole. Definitely had fun making that with Will Bailey. I’d say a large part of the success was getting support on that tune from guys like Diplo, Dillon, Nadastrom, Flux and Felix Cartal, etc.

2)You started in the hip hop scene, and you have producer a great number of tracks in that genre, what made you to move to the moombahton vibe?

VK: Probably just the fact that it was really danceable. With house music the crowd generally will just jump up and down because of the faster tempo. When you slow it down, they’re more inclined to actually dance with each other. And that’s what the club was made for right?

TB: Seeing your wiz khalifa tune & with the obvious revival of south rap aka trap are you going to flirt with that style as it is your forte, or you will keep the approach to the genre you did with your Jay Z remixed album?
VK:I definitely will be putting out some trap music very soon, but I’ve been patient in even attempting to make it. Given that I’ve produced “trap” style hip hop for guys like TI, 2 Chainz and BoB, I wanted to make sure that my take on it was unique and didn’t fall into the trend of what everyone else was doing. I’m very picky with the trap I listen to and play in my sets.

I wouldn’t say trap, moombahton, house or any other genre is or will be my “forte.” If I ever limited myself to producing one genre that’s when it will stop being fun for me.

TB: If you had to choose to remix let’s say Lady Gaga, would you go European EDM or American trap/brostep or more dutch-latin moombah?
It would entirely depend on what the original song sounded like and where I’d want to take it. For example, when I remixed “Go Hard” for Kreayshawn, I wanted to make the track more club-ready. So I significantly sped up her vocals and turned it into this mid-tempo bass music song that had a number of influences from New Orleans bounce music to hard techno.
You don’t always have to make such a drastic flip of the song when remixing it, but it can definitely be more interesting when you change it into something completely different.

TB:Which of the following genres do you really think have the whole potential to become “the next thing”? Bhangra, Juke, Tuki, 3Ball, seapunk, Footwork.
VK: Of those you listed, I think Juke has the most potential. It’s probably the most club ready of those.

TB: Do you think Moombahton just needs one “major artist” to give it a shot and then it is gonna be everywhere?
VK: I think there just needs to be consistent effort among producers to put out quality within the genre for there to be sustainability. If a major artist were to use a moombahton track, it would be cool for a few months then everyone would forget about it. It’s all about routinely being able to hear good music within a genre for it to survive.

TB: To finish this interview I’d like to make a long question as I really want to know your personal opinion, as you may know; Old school Reggeaton (Panamanian plena) and its roots are still not an active part of the big Moombahton tracks, do you think it is because the people who support moombah, major acts like Diplo, Dillon Francis, Flux Pavillion, Congorock, Toddla T, Bart B More, Will Bailey, Torro Torro are not latinos, and the active Latinos, Munchi, Nada, Sabo, Orion, Sazon Booya, aren’t living in a latin country. So it is like their/your perception of what latino may sound like, or it is just a process that simply happens and sounds “Latino” without even trying.
VK: Particularly for me, I think through living in America you can’t avoid being exposed to the music of other cultures. Maybe you hear it from a friend, hear it on the radio or find it on the internet. All of us have been exposed to Latin music at some point in our lives.
So I think it just takes a good producer’s ear and proper inspiration in terms of incorporating that into a dance music structure. Whether it’s intentional of not, a lot of people have heard dem bow riddim if they’ve listened to reggaeton. What’s cool is being able to take traditional Latin elements and modify/add to them in an electronic format. The fun is in your own approach to it.